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Thread: Dim dash lights when the lights are on

  1. #1
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    Default Dim dash lights when the lights are on

    Whenever I turn on my headlights during the day, my dash lights(radio display, odometer display, and overhead console) go really really dim to the point where I normally can't even read them. At night, they are fine however. I turned on the headlights in my grandmothers 98 Grand Cherokee and I could see her radio display, overhead console and odometer display just fine. And yes, my light dimmer switch is in the highest position. Anybody have any suggestions? Thanks
    97 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited
    -5.2L V8 with QuadraTrac
    -Sunroof, Tow Package and all the Limited Goodies
    -Manik brushguard and taillight guards
    -Blackwidow alarm/remote start

  2. #2

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    Bad switch or relay?
    2000 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo, 200k mi
    2WD, 4.0L I-6, 42RE, Dana 35

  3. #3

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    Every post i read about this has to deal with 97 Grand Cherokees, im almost positive they had a bad batch of connectors in 96 for the dimmer. I have the same problem, and i have been messing around trying to find the problem, to me it looks like the actual plug in the back is not making a good connection, i can squeeze the connector and put upward or downward pressure on it, and the lights get brighter, im taking my car to the stealership on friday for some tranny work, i want to see if they know what to do with it. You can always keep it all the way dimmed, but i dont really like it cuz i cant see anything when i have my lights on in the day which i usually do. i.e. the odometer, and temp
    97 4.slow RE/Claytons LA | 4.56's & front trutrac | 33 bfg mt & AR Bajas

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    Default

    Let me know what they say. So you are leaning towards the actual switch that dims the lights. I guess I could swap out the switches and see if that makes a difference.
    97 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited
    -5.2L V8 with QuadraTrac
    -Sunroof, Tow Package and all the Limited Goodies
    -Manik brushguard and taillight guards
    -Blackwidow alarm/remote start

  5. #5

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    I dont know if its your problem, but it seems that mine is the unit that actually dims the lights, i can flick it and they get brighter, then get dimmer again, at first i thought it was a bad ground, in a sense it was a bad connection, the problem is, its just not making a good connection back in the plug that plugs into the light on/off and dash dimmer unit
    97 4.slow RE/Claytons LA | 4.56's & front trutrac | 33 bfg mt & AR Bajas

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    Default

    I dont get something...

    Isnt it normal that you cant see the lights very well during the day anyways? I mean what are you doing differently between night and day? The only difference that I would think is that there is more abient light during day than night.
    Performance "Encinitas Surfboards" sticker on left rear window. Estimating 7-10hp gain.

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    Question

    Isn't there some kind of parade light setting on some years that can be changed or something that allows the dash lights to be brighter with the headlights on so you could see them at full brightness during the day?

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    Jason 94 ZJ: Yes it is normal that you shouldn't be able to see the lights during the day, but shouldn't it be the same on all ZJ's then. You shouldn't be able to see one Jeeps lights really well in the day and not be able to see another ones. Get my drift.


    I think I have heard something about the parade mode feature before but not much. Can anybody elaborate on it?
    97 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited
    -5.2L V8 with QuadraTrac
    -Sunroof, Tow Package and all the Limited Goodies
    -Manik brushguard and taillight guards
    -Blackwidow alarm/remote start

  9. #9

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    no you dont understand, i cant see ANYTHING on my odometer, and thermometer when i turn my lights on during the day, if i press on the light module lightly, it brightens up to the point that its supposed to be, its dim, but i can see it. If you dont understand what im saying, when your in your jeep tommorow, turn your lights on during the day, and turn the dimmer down all the way, thats what mine looks like when i have it cranked up, unless i press on it. Its not a big deal, but its just a pain
    97 4.slow RE/Claytons LA | 4.56's & front trutrac | 33 bfg mt & AR Bajas

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    Default

    My odomete, radio, etc are barely visible but my grandmothers are full blown bright when the lights are on. I don't know why there is a difference between the two unless it has to do with the parade mode thing or something.
    97 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited
    -5.2L V8 with QuadraTrac
    -Sunroof, Tow Package and all the Limited Goodies
    -Manik brushguard and taillight guards
    -Blackwidow alarm/remote start

  11. #11

    Default parade mode is correct, I THINK.

    i thinik you're right about the parade mode. on the 96-98 remember they have the "dealer activated" options like automatic door locks, lights on with wipers, keyless entry unlock with one click instead of two, and i think parade mode is one also. but, mine is a '97 and my display lights are dim too. it doesn't really bother me.

    oh, and a question about these "dealer activated" options; isn't that something that they are supposed to do for free? i was going to have one of mine changed and they told me because it is out of warranty now, they would have to charge me $69 to make the change? WTF?

  12. #12

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    going by how you said you would tap the switch and it would get brighter..... i'd say you can take the module out and use a special electrical lubricant for potentiometers and linear potentiometers. radio shack and other electronics stores keep it in stock.... anyways, just ask for some tv-tuner/control cleaner/lubricant for potentiometers. it would probably help to "completely" disassemble the unit and clean the actual contacts with an old toothbrush and something like zero residue alcohol. regular rubbing alcohol leaves too much garbage behind.

    you might even see some deep grooves in the copper traces and some dark garbage around them. it happened to me. i just layed a fine layer of solder then buffed it down, added some lube and its working fine for 2 years now.


    Edit: if its your photosensor for night driving, thats a whole other ballgame. it could have moisture or debris covering it. you'll know after inspecting and cleaning the contacts. good luck

  13. #13
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    Default

    I don't think it is my switch. I had my lights on today (radio, console, odometer dim as usual) and I tapped the switch and nothing happened. I also fooled with it a little and the lights didn't get any brighter. I am wondering if the parade mode thing is not turned on or working correctly. I will call the dealer Monday and see if the parade mode is a dealer activated feature.
    97 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited
    -5.2L V8 with QuadraTrac
    -Sunroof, Tow Package and all the Limited Goodies
    -Manik brushguard and taillight guards
    -Blackwidow alarm/remote start

  14. #14
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    Default

    my 98 GC does the same, even at nite. the look very dim and POW! out of no where they get briter

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